While there's similar questions on how to compress a PDF using a command-line tool like ghostscript, is there a GUI experience to compress a PDF file's images?

Previously on macOS I used tools like PDFPen to do this.

2 Answers 2


Following are some GUI tools should be able to do what you want:

Avoid importing and exporting with tools that were not intended to work specifically with PDFs, such as GIMP, Inkscape, or Scribus. Such tools work by converting the PDF into another format and back. Such conversions are inherently imperfect.

I would normally use a command line tool, such as pdftk, qpdf, mutool, or sejda-console. They are typically more feature rich than GUIs, load and run faster, and can be used in scripts.

  • Thanks! For the moment I had personally ended up running a command-line line for ghostscript like gs -sDEVICE=pdfwrite -dCompatibilityLevel=1.4 -dPDFSETTINGS=/printer -dColorImageResolution=230 -dNOPAUSE -dQUIET -dBATCH -sOutputFile=compressed-output.pdf input.pdf (where one can adjust ColorImageResolution) but will try out your suggestion of PDF Tricks next time.
    – Vivek Gani
    Jan 22, 2023 at 18:22

One approach is to open the PDF in the app Scribus and then in the 'save as pdf' options adjust the 'Image Quality Settings'

save as pdf dialogue in Scribus Desktop Publishing application

One issue with this approach is scribus has some issues in the import step with preserving text with the original font & sizing.

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